As a staple ingredient in kitchens all around the world, celery makes a great addition to many dishes. It is healthy, gives a distinct savory taste to everything you add it to, and it is a big favorite among vegetarians.
However, not everyone can eat this excellent vegetable. It might be due to an allergy or because of an aversion to its rather unique taste. Luckily, finding a substitute for celery is the easiest culinary task out there. Read on to find out what your options are.
If you need a substitute for raw celery, jicama is one of the best options you can try out. This Mexico native plant is crunchy and juicy, both of which are traits that it shares with celery. It is an excellent substitute for celery in salads, as it tastes rather similar.
However, it is not as harsh as celery can sometimes be. So, if you aren’t a big fan of the way celery tastes and would like something milder with the same health benefits, jicama is the way to go. The same applies if you are allergic to celery.
You can substitute celery with jicama in a 1:1 ratio.
2. Celery Seeds
Celery seeds are a great substitute if you dislike the taste of celery but aren’t actually allergic to it. These seeds contain all the same vitamins that make celery healthy but lack the strong earthy fragrance and taste.
You can use celery seeds in virtually any dish. Add them to stews and soups, or sprinkle them on top of your salads or dips. You can even add them to any bread or pastries you are making.
Since the seeds lack the scent and taste of raw celery, you can use any amount you like or are comfortable with. However, most people use the substitute as follows:
100 g of raw celery = 3 Tbsp of celery seeds
A lot of people love adding celery to their soups and stews because of the creaminess and consistency it adds to said dishes. If that is the case with you, you can use carrots to achieve the very same without changing the flavor of your meal.
Carrots make a great addition to most dishes and mix amazingly with all other vegetables. They will improve the consistency of any sauce or soup you add them to without taking over the flavor and becoming overbearing. That is what truly separates them from celery.
You can even use carrots if you want to achieve the crunchiness that celery often adds to different stews. All you have to do is cut the carrots into thin slices or grate them and add them to a dish when it is almost done cooking. They will remain crunchy and retain all their nutrients, and you won’t even notice that any celery is missing.
Whatever you need the celery for, you can use carrots instead in equal amounts.
4. Celery Salt
As its name suggests, celery salt is a mixture of salt and ground celery seeds. This substitute for celery is a great choice for seasoning a dip, marinade, soup, or stew. Just like celery seeds, celery salt lacks the harsh taste of raw celery but contains all the vitamins and oxidants the plant is famous for.
It is important to mention that this option is not something you should use as a 1:1 substitute for celery. If you do so, you will end up oversalting your dish and making it inedible, which is not something you want. So, use the substitute as follows:
100 g of raw celery = 1 Tbsp of celery salt
Of course, you should always try out your dish after adding the salt and gauge if you need any more. You can add as much as you want as long as you like the taste and don’t find it too salty.
5. Bok Choy
Popularly known as Chinese cabbage, bok choy is another great substitute for celery. It is so popular that many Asian restaurants actually opt to use it instead of celery in most of their dishes. The two taste the same, and bok choy is more accessible and affordable.
Bok choy is just as watery and crunchy as celery, which means that you can use it in both its raw and cooked version. It is rich in protein and vitamins, which makes it an excellent addition to all your vegan or low-carb dishes.
You should use this substitute in a 1:1 ratio.
In all essential aspects, celeriac is the closest relative to celery. In fact, it is actually considered to be a subspecies of celery, which makes it just as great of a substitute. The two vegetables taste and smell the same. However, while you can eat all parts of celery, the only edible component of celeriac is its root.
Celeriac is too bitter to be eaten raw. Thus, you should only use this substitute for celery in cooked meals. You can add it to broths, soups, stews, and sauces. It will improve the consistency of each one while adding a distinct earthy flavor.
When preparing your dish, substitute celery with celeriac in a 1:1 ratio.
Celery can be a great choice if you want to eat raw veggies with any type of dip. However, if you do not like how it tastes or you are allergic to it, you can use cucumber instead.
It has a similar texture to celery, and it is just as crunchy. However, it lacks the harsh earthy scent and taste. Apart from salads, you can add cucumber to smoothies or different sauces that require the use of celery.
For all of the ideas above, you can use cucumber in equal amounts as you would celery.
This is another excellent substitute for celery in cooked meals. You can add leeks to soups and broths to improve their consistency just like celery would. However, they will not be as overbearing when it comes to flavor.
Leeks also make great additions to pasta sauces or risottos, as they mix great with onions and carrots. In other words, you can add leeks to pretty much any cooked meal and enjoy their benefits. You can never go wrong when it comes to this healthy and nutrient-rich veggie.
To get the same flavor and consistency, use this substitute in a 1:1 ratio.